DANC 205
Modern Rebels Fall 2019
Division I

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This course examines the development of modern dance as is reflected in the innovations and limitations reflected in the artists’ works within biases of gender, race, and aesthetics. Students will study the works and philosophies of key artists in the development of modern dance while simultaneously studying modern dance technique. Weekly technique classes will accompany seminar sessions in which we will study pioneers including Martha Graham, Doris Humphrey, Anna Sokolow, Pearl Primus, Jose Limon, Merce Cunningham, Yvonne Rainer, and Katherine Dunham. We will also examine contemporary artists such as Kyle Abraham, Crystal Pite and William Forsythe. Students will develop a critical framework for understanding dance by examining the power dynamics at the time the artists worked, and how these manifest in their work in myriad ways. By what criteria does a culture define bodily innovation? What does a work reflect about its time, its creator, and the place of dance in society? We will examine topics suggested by the works, such as how the body is constructed/deconstructed in, and by, the work, religion and spiritual practice in relation to dance-making, the social identity of the creator and the performers, the role of music/sound in relation to movement expression, and how we “read” dances as individuals. Weekly viewings, critical and historic readings and discussion will be required along with studio practice.
The Class: Type: seminar and lab (studio)
Limit: none
Expected: 12
Class#: 1359
Grading: yes pass/fail option, yes fifth course option
Requirements/Evaluation: class participation in both studio and seminar, written responses, and a research paper and presentation
Prerequisites: DANC 100 or permission of instructor
Distributions: Division I

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